Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Butterfly Walk at Ford Park Cemetery, Plymouth - 1st July 2013

The recent decent weather with warm, humid nights has paid off, with back yard moth trapping providing my first of the year sightings of lime speck pug, buff arches, dark arches and uncertain amongst others.

Buff Arches

I had heard of another moth night being held at Ford Park Cemetery in Plymouth in August and on checking out the website for more details I came across some nature notes which stated marbled white butterflys are found here in the Summer. My sightings of marbled whites can be a bit hit and miss so with a few hours spare and some sunny but breezy weather I headed off to the Cemetery for a look around.

The Cemetery is an old Victorian cemetery in the middle of Plymouth and about 15 minutes walk away from my house. It has hedgerows, mature trees and lots of grass in various states of growth with some areas being very overgrown and wild and flower filled, a very interesting habitat, and within a few minutes of arriving I had found my first butterfly, a meadow brown.

 Meadow Brown
Meadow Brown

A few minutes later I found my target butterfly, a marbled white, basking in the sunshine and flopping about over the grass. It was very restless and eventually flew in to a dense patch of grass and out of sight.
Marbled White

Walking around the Cemetery more meadow browns were seen along with a few speckled wood and small tortoiseshell, 2 large white, a small white, a red admiral and some large skippers, a total of 8 species and all in the centre of Plymouth!

 Small Tortoiseshell
Large Skipper

I also managed a few moth sightings too - a common carpet, 2 cinnabar moths and a companion less burnet companion ( I didn't see any six spot burnet moths). False oil beetles were also seen feeding on the oxeye daisy flowerheads.

Burnet Companion

Bird wise a blackcap and chiffchaff were heard singing and a buzzard and 2 raven flew overhead, and I returned home having had a very peaceful and enjoyable few hours wander around the Cemetery.


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